Warriors coach Steve Kerr fined $25K for outburst
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Warriors coach Steve Kerr is sorry he swore - more than once - at a referee. He knows how hard that job must be.
Kerr was fined $25,000 by the NBA on Monday for his outburst directed at official Bill Spooner late in the third quarter of Golden State's three-point overtime loss at Sacramento on Saturday night.
''I knew I was going to get fined. I deserve it,'' Kerr said Monday.
The reigning NBA Coach of the Year yelled profanities and was held back on the court by assistant coach Mike Brown during the 109-106 defeat. He became irate after a pair of loose ball fouls on Kevon Looney 18 seconds apart, pointing and gesturing in Spooner's direction.
Kerr said he had apologized to Spooner through NBA executive vice president of basketball operations Kiki VanDeWeghe and would do so in person the next time Spooner is assigned to work the Warriors.
''I used inappropriate words. I deserved to be fined. I apologized to Bill Spooner through Kiki yesterday. Next time I see him I'll apologize. It was totally inappropriate and I deserve to be fined,'' Kerr said. ''It didn't surprise me how I angry I was but the word choice was very poor.''
The league said Kerr was verbally abusive to officials and failed to leave the court in a timely manner following his ejection with 3:34 left in the period.
To those who get into officiating, Kerr said: ''God bless you. Those guys have miserable jobs. We yell at them, every coach yells at them every game. Part of being a good ref is you understand it's not personal. That's why I don't think this will be any issue. Bill's a really good ref. He's been in this league a long time. I'll apologize and I'm sure he'll be fine. Like I said, they're kind of used to the abuse. It's never personal.''
Golden State initially got a spark from Kerr going crazy, but it didn't last and the Warriors had one of their worst games yet. They still lead the league at 43-8.
''I think he does a good job picking his spots,'' Andre Iguodala said. ''He's not too over the top. He doesn't do it that often, so when he does do it there's a reason why. I felt like we responded initially really good from it and then we kind of got back to our bad habits that were happening throughout the game.''
Kerr sure looked like he was headed Spooner's way for more, though he joked Monday that Brown sometimes goes a little overboard to keep him out of trouble.
''I'm not even going anywhere. All I want to do is get a view of the official when I yell,'' Kerr said. ''Mike acts like I'm going to just go and try to tackle somebody. I'm not going anywhere. I'm not going to start a fight. Mike's like holding me back when I'm not even trying to get at anybody. We're going to have to work this thing out a little bit better.''
Brown said Monday he wanted to keep Kerr from being ejected at all costs, unclear that the coach had already been hit with one technical when they signaled him out of the game.
''It's the heat of the moment and I've been in that position,'' Brown said. ''At times you don't know what you're going to do, but Steve's obviously in control of himself - 99.9 percent of the time. So, just having a little fun. He's fiery, he's competitive and we're a better team with him out there. Sometimes he does need to make his point, he does need to let the guys know he's fighting for them and he'll do whatever to show them that he's fighting for them.''